Today, the Trump administration finalized its rollback of the implementing procedures for the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). NEPA has been a foundation of American environmental law for 50 years, ensuring development projects take the environment into account and providing the public a voice in decisions impacting their communities. In response to today’s announcement, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) issued the following statement from Ginette Hemley, senior vice president, wildlife conservation:
“With COVID-19 continuing to threaten the health of our communities, and with nature in crisis due to climate change and biodiversity loss, the Trump Administration has decided today to roll back one of our nation’s bedrock environmental laws. For 50 years, NEPA has served to safeguard our air, water, lands, and wildlife and ensure that all Americans have a say when it comes to the impacts of potential development on their communities.
“Our country is currently reckoning with a set of urgent and intersecting challenges – a history of racial injustice, a raging pandemic, and a climate in crisis. Now is not the time to undermine protections for public health and the environment or silence the voices of those who have most often suffered when decisions are made without accounting for both.”